Oct 31,1929---Nov 11,2021

Margaret Claudine Shewmake Nichols passed from this life to her heavenly home on November 11, 2021 in Lenexa, Kansas.  She was an extraordinary angel on earth and will be dearly missed.

Claudine was born October 31, 1929 in Wilburton, Kansas to Claud and Margaret Shewmake and her two older brothers, Rex Shewmake and Max Shewmake.  She grew up in Baxter Springs, Kansas where she met the love of her life, C. William Nichols, and married him on June 15, 1949.  Bill and Claudine became parents to their son David Michael Nichols and their daughter Claudia Nichols Quigg. 

Bill was a pastor in the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) and together they served churches in Poteau, OK, Augusta, KS, Kansas City, KS, Decatur, IL, and Washington, DC.  He also served as General Minister and President of the Disciples at their headquarters in Indianapolis, IN.  In each of these communities, Claudine created a welcoming home and participated deeply in the life of the church and in the community. Claudine believed that her role as minister’s wife was a ministry in itself.  

Claudine began her college education at Pittsburg State University but completed her bachelor’s degree at the University of Kansas and her masters degree at the University of Illinois. Claudine taught for many years in public schools, enjoying her third graders and later providing remedial education to children who struggled to learn to read.

Claudine’s church work included serving as an elder, singing in the choir, directing a community-wide Vacation Bible School, sponsoring youth groups and women’s groups, and a long stint teaching an adult Sunday School class.  She was herself a lifetime learner, and was enthusiastic about supporting the learning of others.

Claudine’s primary passion in life was children. This included children she taught and children in the church, as well as her own two children, seven grandchildren (Maggie, Jesse, Betsy, Michala, Sally, Noah, and Benjamin), and sixteen great-grandchildren (Ezra, Isabella, Charlie, Mason, Reef, Trajan, Lauren, Jane, Joslin, Parker, Emmy, Rayna, Chloe, Malachi, Liberty, and Talyn).

Claudine also enjoyed her associations through groups such as PEO-Chapter IF (IL), Delta Kappa Gamma, and Sigma Alpha Iota.  Her friends in these groups and through church affiliations enriched her life.  

Claudine and Bill enjoyed travel and were able to see much of this world.  Looking at photo albums from their many trips brought her great pleasure, as did reading good books and working crossword puzzles. She also loved music throughout her life, despite her own hearing challenges.

Claudine was predeceased by her parents, brothers, husband, son, and son-in-law Leo Quigg.  She is survived by her daughter and her daughter-in-law Carol Nichols, as well as all of her grandchildren and great-grandchildren.

Claudine’s life will be celebrated at a memorial service in Decatur, IL in April, 2022.  Those wishing to honor Claudine with a memorial gift may make one to either Central Christian Church, 650 W. William, Decatur, IL 62522 or to Baby TALK, 355 E. Marietta, Decatur, IL 62521. 



Condolences

Craig McCoskey Nov 14 ,2021

Friend ,Andover ,Kansas

Claudia, What a lovely tribute to your mother. As I was reading this I could so easily remember her and her genuine kindness towards all of us kids in Augusta during those wonderful childhood days. She obviously spent her life being a blessing to everyone she met and impacting the lives of so many in such a positive and loving manner. As a pastors wife, and being the caring lady she was, I can only imagine how many families she helped get through the many tough times life brings us. Thanks be to God for her love of Him and her living example to you, your family and so many others. For it is her example that now allows all to find peace and joy in the sorrow of her passing and continue to pass her love and memories of a life well lived on for many generations to come. Thanks for sharing your mom with all of us back in Augusta! Love and prayers to you and yours Claudia! Craig McCoskey

Cherilyn Williams Nov 15 ,2021

Mentee ,Indianapolis ,Indiana

Claudine was my mentor - my "mother in the faith" - who shared with me both the joys and pain of being the spouse of a minister in the congregational setting. Her encouragement of me in our early days stayed with me and her continued encouragement through the ensuing decades gave me comfort in what can be a very lonely place in church life. Her joy in her family; her fierce and deep, abiding love for Bill; her passion for education of the young - all this and more made Claudine such a force for good in the world and showed her dedication to being a disciple of Jesus in every sense. I am sure her family feels an enormous loss. Know that God will comfort you and that the wonderful memories of her will sustain you.